Thoracic endovascular (inside the aorta) aortic repair (TEVAR) has emerged as a solid alternative to conventional open surgery for many patients suffering from thoracic aortic aneurysms (TAAs). This minimally invasive option for some patients who are not optimal candidates for traditional open repair can shorten hospital stays and reduce recovery periods for certain patients who are not optimal candidates for traditional open repair.
What to Expect During TEVAR
During the TEVAR procedure, a tube or catheter is inserted into the femoral artery in the groin. A wire is then guided through the artery into the thoracic aorta. A stent graft is delivered in a collapsed state through the catheter, positioned accurately using X-ray guidance. The stent graft is then expanded to span and cover the site of aortic injury. As a result, the stent graft lines and reinforces the torn aortic wall to ensure continuity of blood flow and prevent further bleeding.
Patients typically are in the hospital for one or two days and can resume all regular activities within a month.
While not all aneurysms require surgery, it is generally recommended for aneurysms larger than 5 cm, or those that appear to be growing at a certain rate. The U-M Frankel Cardiovascular Center team evaluates patients to determine which procedure — endovascular or open surgery — is best for each patient. Those with extensive aortic disease may require a combination of open surgery and endovascular repair.
Prior to your TEVAR procedure you may need to stop taking certain medications such as blood thinners. Certain tests might also be required to ensure you are a candidate.
Typically patients are sedated with local anesthesia or may be under general anesthesia. The procedure itself takes about two to three hours. Patients stay in the hospital one to two days and are fully recovered after about a month.
TEVAR at the University of Michigan
With more than two decades of experience in performing TEVAR procedures, the University of Michigan Frankel Cardiovascular Center’s surgical team provides comprehensive care to patients with thoracic aortic aneurysms as well as to all aortic patients. We have extensive experience treating high-risk patients with favorable outcomes.
Make an Appointment
To make an appointment to discuss your need for aortic treatment, call the University of Michigan Frankel Cardiovascular Center toll-free at 888-287-1082 or email us at CVCCallCtr@med.umich.edu. Visit our Make an Appointment page for more information about what to expect when you call us.